Web-Standards Coding Is the Gold Standard
W3C recommends hiring web designers and developers who adhere to open web standards, “Buy Web Standards.”
Updated: January 31, 2016
Web Standards: A Competitive Edge
Web standards compliance enables your site to outperform your competitors’ websites in the search engines and empowers you to target customers your competitors can’t.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Standards-based web design and development align with search-engine-friendly programming in two ways.
- Web standards dictate that developers must separate presentation coding from content, which makes it easier for the search engines to index web content.
- Web standards compliance requires semantic coding, which establishes content structure and provides web developers a platform to specify the hierarchy of data on each page to the search engines.
Properly structured sites that comply with W3C web standards outperform table-based websites on search engines. See our SEO results.
Does this mean your competitors’ table-based sites can not achieve good search results? No. It means they will invest more time and money in website promotion to acquire traffic volume commensurate with a semantic, standards-compliant website. See Search Engine Marketing (SEM).
If you are ready to build a search-engine-friendly website or convert an existing site into one that outperforms your competition, call Nick Stone today in Central Virginia at 434-284-2840.
A Lawsuit in Waiting?
Is Your Site ADA-Compliant (external link) …or a Lawsuit-in-Waiting?
Web-Accessibility Initiative Compliance (WAI)
Standards-compliant web developers build sites that are handicap accessible. Even if the developer doesn’t target a particular set of guidelines, following the standards improves accessibility. Accessibility is not only compassionate and socially responsible, but it is also cost effective.
Target Corporation agreed to establish a $6 million fund as part of their settlement with The National Federation Of The Blind (external link) in a high profile class action regarding Target’s alleged failure to provide web access to disabled visitors attempting to access target.com using screen reader technology. Target’s costs to defend and settle, as well as their public relations nightmare, could all have been avoided with handicap accessible web coding at a tiny fraction of the cost.
Ensuring your site is accessible to handicapped visitors can also increase market share. For example, it is estimated that 7% of all men (external link) in the United States are color blind. According to the 2000 U.S. Census, 19.3% of US citizens(external link) age 5 and older have some disability.
For an example of how web standards compliance enhances accessibility, consider the use of tables to establish web page layout. The W3C standards require developers to replace this inefficient technique by coding web presentation elements with cascading style sheets (CSS). Failing to adhere to this rule can make it more difficult for handicapped visitors to comprehend or navigate your site. Table layouts (external link) are often inaccessible to visually impaired visitors, particularly those using a screen reader.
Please visit our web accessibility resources page for links to the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) site, web accessibility testing resources, and more.
Did you know?
Over 19% of non-institutionalized US civilians have a disability.
Source: Web Aim (external link)
Cross Browser Compatibility
A web page that renders as intended on a standards-compliant browser such as Mozilla Firefox or Apple Safari may appear distorted on a less compliant browser.
Your web pages also may not appear the same when viewed in a newer version of a browser.
Web developers adhering to W3C standards build sites less likely to exhibit either type of cross-browser viewing anomaly.
Cross Platform Compatibility
Computer operating systems render web pages differently. A web page may appear as the developer intended on an Apple computer but appear distorted on a computer running Windows, or Linux, or Unix.
W3C standards-compliant programming minimizes cross-platform compatibility problems.
Alternative devices, such as cell phones and printers, can alter the way a page appears. Web standards address these issues.
Upgrade to Web Standards!
To update your existing site to web-standards compliance, or design and develop a CSS powered new site, contact Nick Stone in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Operating systems, browsers, and viewing devices are evolving. Programming standards and techniques are changing, too.
Professionally developed, W3C standards-compliant programming increases the life span of your site and minimizes the need for programming modifications to maintain compatibility in future viewing environments.